Purpose – The purpose of this study is to elaborate theory regarding the reasons why collaboration strategies fail. The relational view posits that supply chain integration can be a source of competitive advantage. Few firms, however, successfully co-create value to attain supernormal relational rents. Design/methodology/approach – This study uses a quasi-longitudinal, multi-case interview methodology to explore the reasons why collaboration strategies fail to deliver intended results. The authors interviewed managers at 49 companies in Period 1 and managers at 57 companies in Period 2. In all, 15 companies participated in both rounds of interviews. Findings – This study builds and describes a taxonomy of relational resistors. The authors then explore how sociological and structural resistors reinforce each other to undermine collaborative behavior. Specifically, the interplay among resistors: obscures the true sources of resistance; exacerbates a sense of vulnerability to non-collaborative behavior that reduces the willingness to invest in relational architecture; and inhibits the development of essential relational skills and organizational routines. Originality/value – This research identifies and describes the behaviors and processes that impede successful supply chain alliances. By delving into the interplay among relational resistors, the research explains the detail and nuance of inter-firm rivalry and supply chain complexity. Ultimately, it is the re-enforcing nature of various resistors that make it so difficult for firms to realize relational rents.
Supply Chain Management: An International Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 14, 2015
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